Ground wasps: detect soil wasp nest and remove it safely

Wasps love grapes

Again and again there are unpleasant encounters between wasps and garden owners. We explain how you should recognize the wasps and deal with their nests.

Wasps in the earth wasp nest
Wasps in the earth wasp nest | By Soebe [ GFDL or CC-BY-SA-3.0 ], from Wikimedia Commons

Something is moving underground, remember, just before the black and yellow body of a wasp has dug itself out. It’s good that you discovered them in time, because a wasps can cause dire consequences. Whether terrible wasps are really dangerous and how you can safely remove a pothard nest, explains our great article on the subject.

Introductory information about wasps

Actually, the name already reveals what wasps really are. Unlike, for example, paper wasps, earth wasps nest within the earth. What sounds like a marginal note is in reality anything but funny, because a soil wasp nest in the ground also always means that, for example, children can inadvertently step into it.

The wasps generally include wasps that nest in the ground. That’s what the  wasp does, as well as the common wasp . However, it is advisable to take a close look at a find, as also bumblebees, bees and various types of wasps crawl under the ground from time to time, but do not build a nest there and are generally rather peaceful. However, because wasps feed on everything that is sweet, they are often found next to terraces and in the garden, where it can sometimes come to unpleasant encounters. But how does a pothard nest actually come into existence and what should be done when the wasps settle in their own garden?

Where wasps build an earth wasp nest

It is interesting how earth wasps build their nest. So the animals look for a suitable place for a few weeks and are already often observed. Anyone who reacts early and closes typical holes in the soil again and again, thus automatically reduces the risk that a soil wasp nest will even occur. The wasps build their nest mostly in already existing mouse holes or niches, which are in rather shady or sheltered places in the garden. Typical locations are therefore earth surfaces behind the house or garden shed or within the flowerbeds, which are rather rarely dug up and therefore appear particularly tempting. In general, the location in the garden is more than practical for the wasps

Mousoleoch popular with wasps
Mauseloch: popular with earth wasps | © Martina Nowak –

Once the earthweaver nest has been built, everything suddenly goes very fast. The wasps are extremely busy and as soon as the right location is found, they build their nest very fast. Normally, there are around 5,000 wasps there, but there are also some extreme cases where an earthwave nest with up to 50,000 wasps was found. So if the earthweaver’s nest is complete, it will be pretty hard to remove it easily and, most importantly, safely. However, that is not at all in the interest of nature. But is not such a pothard nest a serious danger? Are earth wasps dangerous?

Are earth wasps dangerous?

Once the wasps have built their nest, it often becomes very difficult to reach them. Like all wasps, they have a sharp spike, the consequences of which probably everyone has been allowed to get to know. Stinging the wasp, it does so by extending its sting, allowing it to penetrate the skin, holding its legs tight and jerking the victim into place with barbs on the spine. In addition, poison is passed through a central channel through the spine, which emerges at the end and is injected into the body of the injured person. Incidentally, other than, for example, bees, wasps can extract their sting independently again. Unfortunately that does not mean that he does not get stuck every now and then in a wasps.

Wasp stings
Wasp stands out | © kozorog –

Whether or not wasps are dangerous depends on various factors. The poison in the sting triggers first of all inflammatory reactions in the body, so the affected area turns red quickly and swells usually clear. This is not particularly dangerous, but it often causes pain. So whether wasps are dangerous depends primarily on their own body. About three percent of the people in USA, UK and Germany are allergic to the poisons and every year there is probably one or the other death after a wasp sting. If the wasp does not only swell a bit, but literally spreads, so that, for example, after the actual stitch, almost the whole arm gets fat, this is probably an allergic reaction. Also other symptoms, such as a direct tingling sensation, a stinging in the mouth or a sensation of the heart, suggest such a reaction. In such a case, please call your family doctor or drive to the nearest hospital immediately. With such things is really not to be joking! Just as by the way, as with a sowing wasps in the area of ​​the mouth. Since the mucous membranes often react extremely, a wasp disease in this area is also a great risk for people without allergies.

So whether wasps are dangerous depends mainly on the reaction to a bite and whether you already know how to react to the poison. By themselves, neither bees nor wasps simply attack if you do not approach them too much or launch an attack. Therefore, those who keep their distance are usually quite safe, and thus wasps would only be dangerous if they believed that they had to defend themselves seriously.

Locate and observe earthworts nest

As already mentioned, it is advisable at an early age, namely, when it warms up slowly and the first rays of sun and wasps appear on the scene, to proceed with a certain mindfulness. Landholes should be closed, flowerbeds cared for and often dug up, so that no places for earth wasps can arise. If this does not help, it will become clear at the latest from June on where the wasps have settled successfully. From June, it can be assumed that the earthworm nest has reached an appropriate size, and that the wasps are therefore also clearly visible flying around these special places. If you already know where the earthweash nest is, you should first watch it carefully and, if possible, avoid it.

Notes on handling wasps

Whether wasps or wasps, the animals should never be roughly attacked, beaten or even scared. Basically, wasps are rather harmless creatures that defend themselves, but they will not attack for no reason. So if you just do not get too close to the Earth Wasp’s nest then you should be safe from the little creatures. On the other hand, if you injure or otherwise threaten the wasps, they release odors rapidly, which in turn attract all the other wasps in the area. Exactly this makes the handling of wasps so dangerous and that is why it is important to never actively threaten the animals, but always to meet them with the necessary and passive peace.

The second note concerns a legal aspect. Wasps, bees and bumblebees are considered protected in Germany. This means, first of all, that you are in fact already liable to prosecution if you try to kill the wasps. The Federal Nature Conservation Act stipulates that wildlife can not be killed without a reasonable reason. Wasp nests, including an earthwave nest, are also under protection. The nests should therefore neither be destroyed nor deliberately damaged, which is why professionals should resettle the earthweaser nest. The penalties imposed in such cases may well be five digits.

Remove earthwave residue

According to paragraph 39 (14) of the Federal Nature Conservation Act, wasps should not be disturbed unnecessarily in their development. So, if the Earth Wasp’s nest is far back in the garden, most pros will probably advise you to just leave the wasps alone and wait until the wasp state dissolves by itself after the summer. But if there is an earthweash nest right next to the patio or is it to be found where your own children play every day, then you should definitely hire someone to resettle the wasps. This is usually a pest controller or wasp service. However, they are often not that easy to find, rather expensive and sometimes unavailable. If you have a beekeeper in the village (which is more often the case), you can also ask friendly there, if he takes over the resettlement of the wasps for you.

Strictly speaking, however, the fire brigade is only deployed in a wasp or earth wasp nest if it is public space or an acute emergency or a direct danger exists. A danger would be that children are in the house, move freely and the soil wasp nest is found directly in the garden. However, in reality, the fire department itself decides what is really an emergency and what is not. The first call should still apply to the fire department, which then in case of doubt then just forwarded to an expert, if they can not take care of the wasps themselves.

Remove the wasps yourself

If you are particularly brave, you can of course also lend a hand. This may be extremely dangerous and therefore not recommended. In addition, it can lead to a high administrative penalty, as our notes have already made clear above. We would advise against a distance. Call a professional, who can remove the earthweaver nest expertly and is generally well versed in wasps.

Removing an earthweaver’s nest is always a double-edged sword. Many report that they stun the insects with a foam gel, so that they can eventually be expelled from the garden. Whoever kills the wasps, of course makes himself punishable again.

Even a wasp spray definitely helps to keep the wasps at least away from the area of ​​the terrace and to deter them accordingly. The wasp spray WaspEX is even ecologically harmless to use and is based, inter alia, on basil oil, which has little to do with chemistry and therefore is particularly gentle to distribute wasps.

An alternative to the above-mentioned products may be not only to plant your own garden with flowers or just to sow a few herbs in the area of ​​the house. Sometimes it is enough to put a small pot of fresh basil on the garden table to keep the wasps out of this area. By the way, basil also helps against many other insect species, not just against wasps, so it’s always worth putting some pots on the patio.

Just distract earth wasps

Because the topic of wasps removal is legally very problematic and we as nature lovers also can not answer that somebody forcibly removes the wasps, we would like to point out an alternative to the control of wasps. So it is advisable not to kill or catch the wasps, but simply to distract them. This is also recommended because ground wasps are not very aggressive. Whoever neither threatens nor gets too close to their nest, usually takes no great risk.

Wasps love grapes
Wasps love grapes | © LFRabanedo –

Dirt wasps can be distracted with the so-called deflection-feeding. Overripe grapes are particularly suitable. If such sweet grapes are placed at a distance of ten meters from the earth wasp nest, they will lure out the wasps and divert them accordingly. A deflection feeding that does not kill, nor ends brutally, but simply works with a diversion. So, the wasps can easily lure in the back of the garden, so that the family, on the terrace in the front, has their peace from the wasps. In general, this works surprisingly well, at least if the garden has a corresponding size.

Closing words: Wasps are a part of nature

There are all kinds of creatures in nature and they are all very important for our ecosystem. Straight wasps are an important factor and should not be destroyed without thinking. With our tips on the topic wasps, we hope we helped you to solve the problem. Since terrestrial wasps are mostly peaceful anyway, if they are not actively attacked, they should simply accept them as roommates of their garden and educate children about possible dangers. However, if you are uncomfortable having a soil wasp nest in the garden, the distraction feeding, a pot of fresh basil or, in an emergency, the fire department will help to safely remove the earthworm nest or forward it to a specialist. But let’s be honest: bees, wasps, Bumblebees – In the summer, they are easy to get along with, and living with them is always better than simply destroying them. Especially since the correct planting and control can make sure that the wasps feel rather uncomfortable, at least in the area of ​​the house.

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